In yet another example of the impact that the new Chinese merger control regime can have on international transactions, Toshiba had to delay its $310 million acquisition of Fujitsu’s hard drive business by two months. The parties had originally planned to close their transaction in June, but on 19 June they announced that they had received approvals from all relevant jurisdictions (including Japan, Taiwan, the US and the EC) except one.

While the parties declined to name the regulator concerned, it is widely suspected that the transaction was postponed due to a failure to obtain clearance from the Chinese Minister of Commerce (MOFCOM). Since the entry into force of China’s new merger control regime last August, MOFCOM’s review process has proven to be slower than that of other jurisdictions, partly because of MOFCOM’s strict requirements concerning the completeness of the notification file.

On 14 September, the parties announced that they had finally obtained approval from all antitrust authorities.